Pregnant?: 3 Things To Consider Before Having A Dental Implant

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If you are pregnant, your body is undergoing miraculous changes to ensure that your baby receives the nutrients he or she needs to develop properly. Nevertheless, you may still have dental concerns that you would like addressed. For example, if you have a missing tooth, you may want to receive a dental implant. Here are some things to consider before having the procedure:

Are the x-rays for a dental implant safe for you and your developing baby?

Dental x-rays are necessary to verify the structural integrity of the jawbone and to ensure that an implant is placed properly. However, dental x-rays do emit radiation that could negatively affect a developing embryo or fetus if exposure is prolonged. Nevertheless, the amount of radiation in a dental x-ray is usually negligible, and your dentist may place a lead apron over your chest and abdomen as a precaution during the procedure. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, dental x-rays are considered safe during pregnancy.

Is lidocaine safe during pregnancy?

During the placement of a dental implant, a local anesthetic, such as lidocaine, may be used. Lidocaine is considered a Category B medication, and it does cross the placenta rapidly. Your dentist may want to restrict your exposure to the drug, so if an implant is performed, he or she will use just enough of the drug to numb the desired area. Some dentists believe that the benefit of lidocaine outweighs the fetal risk. However, your dentist may only want to use the drug if your dental procedure is considered medically necessary, such as in the case of a root canal, extraction or filling.

Is the implant procedure too invasive?

The surgical placement of a dental implant is still considered an invasive procedure, and your dental provider may not be sure how it will affect your fetus. He or she may suggest waiting until the second or third trimester to have the procedure performed, or your dentist could ask you to postpone it until after delivery. During the first trimester, your baby's organs are still developing, and the susceptibility to miscarriage is greatest. During the second and third trimesters, the fetal organs are already in place; for the most part, they are just growing in size.

If your dental health is compromised during pregnancy, it can affect your unborn child. A pregnant woman who suffers from a periodontal infection is more likely to have a premature birth, and her baby is more likely to have a low birth weight. Low birth weight is defined as weighing less than 2,500 grams. Nevertheless, postponing a dental implant may not compromise your oral health. If you are pregnant and interested in receiving a dental implant, contact your dentist today. He or she will be able to advise a surgery time that will be best for you and your unborn child. To find out more, contact a business like Family Dental Care.